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HONOLULU – Schuman Aviation Company, Ltd., announced today that it is accredited by the International Standard for Business Aircraft Operations (IS-BAO), the first such aircraft operator in the country so distinguished. IS-BAO is a code of best practices designed to help flight departments worldwide achieve the highest level of safety and professionalism. IS-BAO safety certification is awarded to flight departments that have successfully met the rigorous IS-BAO standards as verified by an accredited IS-BAO auditor.

Schuman Aviation is the parent company of Makani Kai Helicopters, an Oahu helicopter air tour company, and Makani Kai Air, an FAA Part 135 fixed-wing on-demand and scheduled aircarrier operating between Oahu, Molokai, Maui and Lanai.

“The IS-BAO accreditation for Makani Kai is unique as it is the only company in the country,out of 478 operators so certified, with multiple types of flight operations, spanning air tour toairline,  to achieve such a high safety rating,” according to Richard Schuman, president.“Although preparing for the safety audit was a lengthy and arduous process, this accreditation demonstrates that we value safety above all.”

The IS-BAO safety program includes instituting a Safety Management System (SMS). SMSprograms require higher safety standards, call for improving both the organization and personnel,  standard operating procedures, training programs, flight operations, aircraft equipment requirements, aircraft maintenance requirements, company operations manual, emergency
response plan, environmental management, occupational health and safety, transportation of dangerous goods, and security.

The IS-BAO Safety and Compliance Audits examine an aircraft operator’s systems, processes, practices and documentation. The comprehensive Safety Audits determine whether the operations and maintenance activities of an airline, charter operator or flight department are in compliance with regulatory requirements as well as with internal standards, policies and procedures and industry best practices.

Typical benefits from a Safety Audit include:

Assessment of compliance with applicable regulations (such as the U.S. Federal Aviation Regulations), requirements, and standards.

Early identification of deviations in compliance, enabling the operator to take corrective action. This is particularly helpful in preparation for a regulatory inspection, such as a National Aviation Safety Inspection Program (NASIP) Inspection conducted by the FAA.

Assessment of the viability and effectiveness of existing programs and processes.

Identification of deviations from internal policies and procedures before the deviations become significant safety issues.

Financial savings from timely correction of existing problems, avoidance of potential problems, and avoidance of civil penalties.

As a result of the intensive IS-BAO certification process, the company is now better focused on risk assessment and mitigation, says Schuman, identifying risks before they become hazards and preventing potential accidents and incidents.

“Being IS-BAO certified truly means that our work has just begun,” says Bruce Mayes, SMS manager for Schuman Aviation and the individual who spearheaded the effort. “Achieving compliance is tantamount to getting a pilot’s license: now the organization can begin to learn best practices and develop a safety culture second to none.”

Schuman Aviation Company, Ltd., established in 1996 and located at 130 Iolana Place at the Honolulu International Airport, operates Eurocopter AS-350 A-Stars, a Hughes 500, two Piper Chieftain twin-engine airplanes and two Cessna Grand Caravan turbine aircraft.  An FAA Part 135 carrier, Makani Kai Helicopters also is an FAA certified 145 Repair Station. Makani Kai Air Charters is an FAA Part 141 scheduled air carrier.

Photo caption: From left to right: Robert “Mac” Smith, instructor pilot and check airman; Richard Schuman, president and owner; Bruce Mayes, chief pilot and SMS coordinator.

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